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Shell: Geismar expansion on track

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,

In a recent statement, Shell Chemical LP confirmed that is making good progress on the main construction of its fourth linear alpha olefins (AO) unit at its chemicals manufacturing site in Geismar, Louisiana, USA.

The 425 000 tpy capacity increase will make the site the largest AO producer in the world, with a production capacity of more than 1.3 million tpy.

Shell started main site construction in January 2016, following a final investment decision (FID) in November 2015. The company has safely placed large process equipment such as reactors, columns and vessels, and pre-assembled modules that will form the core of the new AO unit.

The project is currently taking delivery of more than 600 large pieces of equipment. Two large ramps, each able to sustain 250 t loads, have been placed side-by-side to load and unload heavy equipment.

Shell has also finished building a cooling tower for the new AO unit, and two new storage areas, one for rail and one for the AO unit’s high-purity butene.

Shell will supply advantaged ethylene feedstock from the nearby Norco and Deer Park sites, which allows the site to respond to market conditions.

Graham van’t Hoff, Executive Vice President for Royal Dutch Shell plc’s global Chemicals business, said: "This is one of Shell’s largest chemicals investments in the USA […] We are on track to begin commercial production by the end of 2018, enabling Shell to remain an important economic engine for this region.”

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